Common Problems with Designing Client

Working with designing clients is not an easy task by any means. Client problems are never-ending which in certain cases makes working progress almost impossible. These design issues can arise from miscommunication or even minor conflicts with the design clients as well. Let us uncover some common client problems and how to deal with them respectfully and effectively.


Almost every freelancer has faced client rage at least once in their career. You are not alone when it comes to dealing with unruly designing clients. However, most of it can be based on human nature, we all are humans and these designing client-related issues are inevitable.


When it comes to designing new projects, getting stalled on content is rather common. In some scenarios, you might find yourself waiting for a specific type of content from the client’s end. Going through this situation can put your progress completely at a halt and it is counterproductive.

The reasons for content stalling can be various but the most common ones are:

– The designing client is not well equipped with the content knowledge and has no idea where to begin, which results in a delay.
– The client is caught up with other important work or even decides to dodge the situation completely.

Dealing with something which is not your fault can be frustrating at times, but it is essential to maintain your cool and work it out in a strategic manner.

How to deal with it?

   – content production should be made easy for the clients by making a tool to extract content from them.
   – Ask questions, be proactive in client interviews and take notes.
   – Consider hiring a content writer for the content production process if the clients aren’t well equipped with the required knowledge.


We all know this one, we all have worked for this type of client at least once in our career. Some designing clients are different, even if you are producing the best results and obeying deadlines, they are never satisfied. In the majority of the cases though, angry clients are a result of:

   – you mess up something in the project
   – unreasonable client

No matter how unreasonable the designing client is, it is extremely essential to be humble on your part. In case you have screwed something up, it is recommended to apologize and accept mistakes. Let’s discuss some ways in which you can deal with angry clients:

   – If you are in the wrong, try to make things transparent, explain the working process to the clients so that they know what went south.
   – Making excuses will only make the situation worse. Accept the faults and do not get defensive when questioned.
   – At this stage, it is essential to discuss with the designing client, “what comes after?”. Explain your end clearly and discuss your plan to get back on track.

But what if the designing clients are being unreasonable and are not listening to you?

   – At this stage, it is essential to return to the contract and state out clearly what was mentioned and what was not. Anything out of the contract should be out of the question now.

   – It is your right to hold the client accountable to what they agreed on if they are being completely unconditional.

   – If the situation does not get better after all these steps, it is time to fire the client. But make sure, you have a termination clause in your contract, or you might find yourself in legal trouble.

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There are some cases in which you have no clear idea about what you are actually making because of poor communication with the designing clients. Or you could also have a pretty solid assumption of what is being expected but it turns out to be wrong. Well, differing expectations are rather common when there is a lack of planning. Why does this occur?

   – lack of communication is our fault in most cases as it is our job to pen everything down to provide the best results. However, there might be cases where the designing clients are being completely unreasonable. It is extremely essential to ask questions and be on the same page with our clients to avoid such situations.

How to prevent it from happening?

   – Just like discussed above, take notes, have a checklist before the client interview, and ask all the essential questions for the project. You are a professional and it is necessary to give some ideas to the clients if they are completely in the blue. Show samples of trending designs and past works.


This is the most frustrating scenario to be in, you devote hundreds of hours to make something elegant and unique. When you are done, the clients have suddenly disappeared. These designing clients are rather hard to spot as they are very eager for the project in the initial stages. But then, they just vanish, not answering calls or replying to emails. One might ask, why do clients disappear after spending a lot of time on the drawing board?

   – The clients get occupied with some other important work.
   – The design might no longer be a priority for them

How to deal with them?

– The ideal way of dealing with such designing clients without dropping their projects completely (in case they reappear suddenly and have unconditional demands) is by dropping a mail stating “We’ll have to take your project out of the active work and move it back if we don’t hear back from you in X days”. Doing this will ensure that the clients cannot hold you responsible for any incomplete project work and you will also be able to focus more on other active projects.

– Be sure to mention the client-delay issue in your contract, where you can terminate a project work if you don’t hear back from the client. Feel free to add some more clauses where you can explain your working conditions for a returning client.


This might come as a shocker but sometimes your frustrations or resentment can affect the progress of a project. It is essential to have a good attitude towards the clients to make the work environment productive and positive. Some reasons for a bad attitude are:

   – Personal matters affecting professional work.
   – Taking out the heat of one client on the other designing clients.

Anger is a toxic environment is natural but coping with it is extremely essential. The goal is to keep progressing without any hiccups. Let’s discuss, how to prevent a bad attitude.

   – Take the day off. If you don’t feel like working because of these issues, it is better to take a leave and reset. Working in such conditions can be degrading for the project work.
   – Sleep on it. Take your time, especially if the clients are being unreasonable.
   – Work on your attitude, it is essential to have control of yourself while in a working environment.


In some cases, we might agree to a lot of new projects, while having a backlog of unfinished work. Freelance work can often be unpredictable, and you might take contracts from more designing clients to neglect the uncertainty of getting new ones.

How to prevent this from happening?

   – make a proper schedule and plan dates with clients who can wait for a bit on their projects.
   – give new clients some homework to buy some time for other projects.


You should keep your distance from these designing clients at all costs. They are counterproductive, as most of the time spent in interviews with them is wasted. They keep asking a lot of irrelevant questions and waste a lot of time while doing it. They call you and mail you most of the time but any of these communications are not productive at all. Let us discuss why these clients are, the way they are:

   – Some designing clients are control freaks and they want all the details about the project which in turn hogs all the time from actual work on the project.
   – We allow the clients to take our time by entertaining them 24X7.
How to prevent such customers:
   – Don’t entertain all the calls from these clients. Discuss and make a schedule for calls so that you can manage time better.
   – By answering odd-time calls and mails you are training the clients to be unruly and unconditional. It is essential to make a proper routine before things get out of hand.

No matter how bad the designing clients are, it is important to maintain your calm and demeanor in almost any situation. Be the bigger man if required and have control over yourself. No spell can make bad designing clients go away, making things right is in your hands.
Have a proper plan for any type of project and make notes when necessary. It is extremely essential to be productive while working on projects. There are no bad projects, consider the less fruitful ones as being a learning experience.

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Henny Darwin is a content strategist and moderator at Designfier, one of the leading graphic design marketplaces.